MSI GeForce RTX 3080 SUPRIM X 10G review
In this review, we benchmark the GeForce RTX 3080 SUPRIM X from MSI; yes, MSI is back with a new premium model and a new cooler, of course, a triple-fan solution with an otherwise heavily customized product. With their aim to perform at low acoustics combined with a beautiful design card that comes with a dual BIOS, one silent mode, and one gaming (perf) mode, let's start this review, shall we?
It was 2017 when Ampere as a GPU architecture surfaced onto the web, and up-to earlier this year, NVIDIA has not listed this name in any of its roadmaps on the consumer side. It was with military-level secrecy that the Ampere consumer part was developed. Ampere, of course, is the base unit of electric current in the international system of units. But the GPU is named after André-Marie Ampère, a French mathematician and physicist, considered the father of electrodynamics. NVIDIA has a track record of naming their GPU architectures after mathematicians and physicists or closely related fields, of naming a few; Pascal, Fermi, Kepler, Maxwell, and more recently, Turing. While it was no secret that the new GPUs would be based on Ampere, we've seen much discussion about fabrication nodes, architecture, and specifications. Still, everybody seems to have forgotten that Ampere already launched earlier this year for the HPC market. The first product based on Ampere was the NVIDIA Tesla A100, outfitted with a GA100 Ampere GPU based on 7nm fabricated at TSMC; that product holds 54 billion transistors 6912 shader cores. September 1st of the year 2020, NVIDIA announced three Ampere graphics cards in its initial launch wave. A week before announcements, specifications of the GeForce RTX 3080 and 3090 took a twist; the shader core count doubled up from what everybody expected. The GPUs are fabricated on an 8nm node derived from Samsung. This process further develops Samsung's 10nm process; no EUV is applied in production just yet. The first wave of announcements would see the GeForce RTX 3080 and 3090 being released first, and as a bit of a surprise, the GeForce RTX 3070 would be arriving in roughly the same timeframe as well. The initial Ampere for consumers launch entails the GeForce RTX 3070 8GB GDDR6, RTX 3080 10GB GDDR6X, and a 24GB GDDR6X based flagship, the GeForce RTX 3090. The lineup brings Gen2 ray-tracing cores and the 3rd iteration tensor cores. These cards will all be PCIe 4.0 interface compatible and offer HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4a.
The new SUPRIM series is positioned beyond GAMING and being shaped into a more luxurious level.
“SUPRIM means more than just a new graphics card series from MSI. Decades of circuit engineering and cooling development have led to a new product design that embraces prestige in its appearance and capabilities. The concept turns to reality with high-quality materials coming together such as thickened copper inside the PCB to brushed aluminum plating with precision-cut edges on the exterior of the cooler. A focus on the user experience and quality are reflected in the details, such as the dual BIOS being set to Silent out of the box for comfort. This card is amped up with robust power stages for durability, cooled with an extensive heatsink system for sustaining extreme performance, and clad in a modern aesthetic to reflect a high-performance lifestyle.”
The new MSI SUPRIM X series GeForce RTX 3080 is once again fitted with that NVIDIA GA102 GPU; it has a nice 8704 Shader cores activated and is paired with 10GB of all-new GDDR6X graphics memory. MSI equipped the card with a semi-passive design; the three fans start to spin and cool once the GPU warms up. The card is beefed up pretty extreme. As explained, it has a dual BIOS with gaming performance and silent mode. Make no mistake; both modes offer the same performance, just at different temperatures and acoustics. MSI increased the power allowance as well as the turbo clock frequency. This card has a clock speed of 1905 MHz, the fastest on the market. The memory runs stock at 19 Gbps effective. SUPRIM X has been fitted with a new TRI FROZR 2S cooling solution with three TORX 4.0 fans. New in the design is that it has close quarters heat pipes around the VRM and a backplate (which is now made of metal). So that provides even better cooling. The SUPRIM X RTX 3080 also has a higher TGP value. The RTX 3090 SUPRIM X is listed at 420W (+70W optional), and the RTX 3080 SUPRIM X we test today is rated at 370W (+50W optional). To juice up such hefty values, the cards have been fitted with 3x 8 (6+2) pins, creating an issue with some power supplies cables and power-wise. So it would be best if you had at least a proper 750 Watt PSU for this graphics card. Weighing in at 1862g, this baby has been sized quite big, 336 x 140 x 61mm. You'll receive a free mouse mat as well as an extra bracket to support the weight of the card should you want that. And we know it is a relative statement, but it is a thing of beauty, alright ... Next page, please.